An outbreak of unseasonably cold weather gripped Tasmania on December 17, 2016. Higher regions even reported summer snowfall while meteorologists predict the colder than usual weather in the state is set to continue.
The snow blanketed tops of the Cradle Mountain and the Great Lake in Tasmania's Highlands on December 17. Only a day earlier, about 100 km (62.2 miles) away, at Granton, a grass fire was reported.
-1.2°C (29.8°F) was recorded at Liawenee while 2.5°C (36.5°F) was reported at Cressy and 3.6°C (38.5°F) at Sheffield.
According to the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM), the snowy conditions were brought on by a cold front and an associated low, that deepened as it moved southward across the state.
Video credit: Great Lake Hotel, Tasmania
The snow was still holding onto Mt Wellington on the morning of December 19 (local time). However, the forecasters predict the weather is about to get warmer, and about 23°C (73.4°F) are expected on December 25.
According to the BOM's climate outlook for the period between January and March 2017, the colder than usual summer will continue in Tasmania due to a dominant westerly influence. Cold temperatures were predicted to affect the region of the Central Plateau by the morning of December 20.
The coldest Christmas Day in Hobart, the capital of Tasmania was reported on December 25, 1984, as 12.6°C (54.7°F) were observed. However, this year the white Christmas is still highly unlikely, as significant warming up is expected over the next few days.
Featured image: Unseasonal snowfall in Tasmania, December 17, 2016. Image credit: Great Lake Hotel, Tasmania